But today, Stoller's photographs are like memento mori
conjuring a dead idea of architecture.
The science aside, astounding levels of imagination, artistry, wit and sheer reverence have gone into Body Worlds; serve as it might as memento mori
, it's primarily a celebration of life.
The feeling of memento mori
is pronounced but sterile, almost sci-fi, especially in the arrangements of figurines: One composition portrays the items ahvost disappearing into the mist, and another image seems to fatally degrade like a frame of old, acid-eaten cinema stock.
Her expression is calm, her lips pursed as though waiting for a confession, and while her hands and face are realised with photographic precision, her dress is a swirl of brushstrokes in vivid yellows, reds and pinks that surround her body, posed as if for a memento mori
This is followed by the duet, Memento Mori
, which is short and intimate.
Naples stands in the shadow of a time bomb, Mount Vesuvius, and the chaotic, colorful city itself is a memento mori
The piece "Superlux" was programmed as love and nothing but - but it had heart-rending undertones when Dimitris Kaminaris came out into the audience clutching his lover's shoe and tried to fit the shoe onto the feet of people in the audience' it clicked with me, having seen a prior Greek dance production, Memento Mori
, when the wife of Orpheus wore only one shoe in Hades - a lost soul.
The suggestion of the memento mori
became even more evident in Francesco Arena's Structure con immagini (Structures with Images), 2009, dozens of freestanding sculptures, each crowned with an ink-jet print showing one of the artist's political or cultural heroes.
Amazingly, their second piece Memento Mori
is even better, a one hour, non-stop drama in which the two dancers constantly surprise.
It's a very modern, limited idea of art, appropriate to our so-called age of anxiety, suggesting the limitations of Guston's still lifes, conveying as they do the stultifying effect of anxiety on perception--the way it reduces one's vision to a few precious obsessions, not to say an obsession with oneself--which, ultimately, diminishes the role of art to supplying memento mori
of a hermit's unlived life.
is another work based on a classical story, this of Orpheus who descends into the world of the dead to find his wife Eurydice, killed by a serpent.
Replique," however, can also mean "retort"--in this case, the niggling of absence in the form of the memento mori